15th March, Salamander Project Excursion with the „Communal living“ Home Meridianos (Almería, Spain)

On saturday the 15th of March, Esther, Javier and Juan Ramón, from the „Asociación Herpetológica Granadina“ our collaboration partners in Spain, had a wonderful day out and outdoor workshop in the province of Almería. Meridianos is an association that works with underages who are subject to judicial measures.

Thery are kids with very special characteristics…but who are forever grateful for any kindness shown to them.

The activity was divided in two parts: the first one was the presentation of the subject (Salamanders and other amphibians ) and a videoplay about salamanders(this video belongs to Javier). The way he explains the subject is very appropriate for work and interaction with teenagers.
And who would have said that Esther would dare to approach amphibians!!!???-direct quotation.

Four boys, three educators and the center’s psychologist were present at that moment in time. Eight youngsters in total live at the Home, but four oft hem had home leave fort he weekend.

Once the talk was over, the second part oft he activity started: they left towards a ravine with a thermal spring, in the municipality of Retamar, between the city of Almería and Cabo de Gata ( a coastal protected area in the province). According to Juan Ramónthe area is very similar to Morocco: „you lift a stone and you find all sorts of things, from a scorpion and a natterjack toad to a beetle…“
It was a magical morning. As soon as Juan Ramón or Javier explained what one could find, the kids would lift a stone, and there they were…the animals.

The psychologist (Desi), the educator (Mohamed) and the four youngsters were captivated by them (in the van they were always commenting excitedly about the sightings).

Once they explored that area, they parted towards a salt lake in Cabo de Gata. There is a great birdwatching center there under which they took refuge from the burning sun, shared their food, and enjoyed the sight oft he birds.

The crowning jewel of the day was coffee and cake next to the sea, a present from the boys and educators, while they all shared the day’s emotions.

Later, already at home, they all called Esther to express their thanks for such a beautiful experience. The educators who had been unable to attend the trip, a bit „jealous“, would love to participate in any future activity (workshop led by Javier and Juan Ramón….our boys are crowd-pleasers!!)

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